Raymond Henry Julius Ritz was born on February 24, 1922 on the family farm near Truman to William and Hulda (Urban) Ritz. He was baptized in February of 1922 and confirmed in 1936, both at St. Paul's Lutheran Church in Truman. Ray attended District 6 country school and St. Paul's Lutheran Parochial School. He graduated from Truman High School with the class of 1940. Ray enlisted in the US Army on May 14, 1944 and was assigned to the 71st Infantry Division serving in the European Theatre. Staff Sergeant Ritz was assigned to Dachau Concentration Camp overseeing many prisoners. After the war, he remained in Germany with the Intelligence Corps using his ability to speak German to see if the Germans were planning an uprising. Ray was discharged on June 11, 1946. Ray's ownership of an airplane afforded him to fly to Rochester to court his future wife, Elaine Muller. They were united in marriage on June 19th, 1954 in Osage, IA. Ray farmed in the Truman area and was a school bus driver, worked at Carrol's Market, the Post Office and was the Martin County Veteran's Service Officer. Ray was an active member at St. Paul's Lutheran Church. He was a member of the Oles-Reader-Bosshart American Legion Post 115. Ray was an avid coin collector. Raymond died on Sunday, August 18, 2013 at the Lakeview Methodist Health Care Center in Fairmont.
Ray is survived by his wife of 59 years, Elaine Ritz, Fairmont, MN; one daughter, Debra Manley, Hugo, MN; one granddaughter, Jacklyn Gronholz, Minneapolis, MN and numerous nephews, other relatives and friends. Ray was preceded in death by his parents; two sons-in-law, Jon Gronholz and Mike Manley; two brothers, Clarence Ritz and Roger Ritz in infancy and one sister, Gladys Anderson.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions are preferred to St. Paul's Lutheran Church and School, Truman and Martin Luther High School, Northrop.